Ron Littlepage is taken aback. Here’s a bit; follow the link for the rest.

The outstanding quote of last week has to go to state Rep. Matt Gaetz.

He’s pushing a bill that would allow the 1.4 million Floridians who have concealed carry gun permits to openly carry their firearms.

During a House committee debate on the legislation, Gaetz had this to say, according to Politico Florida:

The bill restores a right “granted not by government but by God.” Say what?

As someone who was raised in the Baptist church and who graduated from a Baptist university, Baylor, I’ve read the Bible from Genesis to Revelations more than once.

But I must have missed the part about God coming out in favor of open carry.

Jeez Louise, you can’t make this stuff up.

As a Southerner, I often find myself resenting the way white Southerners* are portrayed as dumbass hicks. Even when I was a kid, I couldn’t stand the Beverly Hillsillies.

It’s been a theme since the earliest days of film and, later, broadcast media (we won’t even talk about print). Find any old radio or television comedy show with a character from the South, you will find a dumbass hick. Heck, Tennessee Ernie Ford made a fortune playing dumbass hicks. Even Andy Griffith achieved his first great success as a dumbass hick in No Time for Sergeants. And don’t forget Jim Nabors and George Lindsey.

But, honest to Pete, as long as a great lot of white Southerners continue act like dumbass hicks, I have to concede that they are asking for it.

*The portrayal of black Southerners is another, much more evil story.

13 November 2015 · Comments Off on Nagomatic · Categories: Geek Stuff, Personal Musings

Reg Henry has a Fitbit fit.

He has a point. Fitbit and the like are stupid tech. Ditch the nagomatic and go for a bicycle ride.

11 November 2015 · Comments Off on Late Night Thought · Categories: Personal Musings

I have seen posts on various blogs wishing folks a “Happy Veterans’ Day.”

I don’t get it. What can possibly be “happy” about Veterans’ Day?

Where is the happiness in honoring folks who willingly or unwillingly (remember the draft? I can still remember my lottery number) put themselves in danger on behalf of their country, whether for good cause or ill? I put out my flag today, but it was not about happiness; it was about respect.

My Daddy was a veteran of World War II. Mostly he didn’t want to talk about it.

Sad, somber, serious, reflective, thankful, grateful, respectful, all those I could get. But “happy”?

Give me a break.

06 November 2015 · Comments Off on The Sad Truth Lurking behind the Republican Candidates · Categories: Personal Musings, Political Theatre

The Republican candidates, including “The Smart One,” and their whole damn party are nuts, and dangerously nuts at that. For example.

I understand that the next Republican debate will be moderated by Robbie the Robot, assisted by a Tribble, and broadcast on XFN (the X-Files Network).

More »

03 November 2015 · Comments Off on Stray Thought · Categories: Personal Musings

I’m so old that I can remember when all automobiles did not look alike.

03 November 2015 · Comments Off on Intermediaries · Categories: Culture Warriors, Personal Musings

Have you ever noticed that persons who claim that God has spoken to them always hear exactly what they want to hear?



26 October 2015 · Comments Off on LOL · Categories: Personal Musings

I have been an unabashed mystery buff since I read my first Pocket Books Perry Mason story at age 13. (It cost 35 cents at Thalhimers* Department Store in Richmond, Va. When we accompanied my father on business trips to Richmond and toured Talhimers and Miller and Rhoads while he was in meetings at the Virginia Department of Agriculture, my mother would give me a dollar and a dime and I would agonize over what three Pocket Books to buy.)

I can go on for hours about my favorite mystery writers, my favorite OTR mystery shows, and my favorite TV mystery shows. (I have also been a Sherlockian since I first read the Canon, which I started reading the evening of the day on which I had two wisdom teeth pulled when I was about 15.)

Rarely does a mystery story cause me to laugh out loud, but this one did, and I’m just starting chapter two.


*I much preferred Thalhimers to Miller and Rhoads.

07 October 2015 · Comments Off on Full Geek · Categories: Geek Stuff, Personal Musings

I consider the coolest thing I did all day was to print a text file from the command line with the lp command.

See man lp for more.


I printed a file with lp over ssh today, Friday.

Use Linux. It just works.

29 September 2015 · Comments Off on The Last CSI · Categories: Personal Musings

We DVRed the last CSI and watched it last night.

It ripped and snorted, but not necessarily in all the right places. Halfway through, I turned to my friend and said, “CSI meets Nightmare on Elm Street.”

The actress who played Lady Heather had obviously had her lips botoxed since her previous appearances on the show. Lesson learned: Don’t Botox, detox.

For a science fiction show (you don’t really believe that forensics labs have those resources and that kind of dedication, do you? If you do, I have this bridge . . .), it had a good run. Even in the middle years, when it was “sexual perversion of the week” (like the David Vitter Memorial Episode), it was fun to watch.

27 September 2015 · Comments Off on A. Schedule a Lunar Eclipse · Categories: Personal Musings

Q. How can you guarantee that the skies will be cloudy the whole darn night?

In truth, the skies cleared long enough for us to see most of the covering-up portion. The moon was about 7/8s covered when the clouds rolled back in.

20 September 2015 · Comments Off on Bikeways · Categories: Personal Musings

fuji_sport_10-300x205You can’t make this stuff up.

When I ride my bicycle around the neighborhood, I freguently find myself overtaking joggers who are jogging on the wrong side of the road (that is, with the traffic rather than against it) while their ears are stuffed with noise-cancelling earbuds. Even though I shout, “Passing,” as loud as I can, I worry that they will drift in front of me because they, frankly, are being stupid and selfish.


I have certainly mentioned this before, but, as my old coworker used to ask, “Did you ever see a smiling jogger?”

16 September 2015 · Comments Off on No Republican Debate in This House · Categories: Personal Musings, Political Theatre

I’ll be watching a baseball game. At least it’s guaranteed to have only one loser.

08 September 2015 · Comments Off on Stray Question · Categories: Culture Warriors, Hypocrisy Watch, Personal Musings

Will there come a time when persons who have carnal thoughts be willing to admit that their thoughts are their thoughts, and not some phenomenon foisted upon them by outside agency?

Really, now, if you have a dirty mind, own up to it, take pride in it, revel in it, and, for Pete’s sake, stop blaming others for your carnal thoughts.

They are your thoughts and no one else’s.

Full disclosure:

I have nothing against dirty minds. Mine’s as dirty as they come.

I do have lots of things against hypocrites and Miss (and Mr.) Grundys.

More »

05 September 2015 · Comments Off on Vic Damone and the Maguire Sisters and Steve Lawrence and Edie Gorme and Frank Sinatra and Bobby Darin . . . · Categories: Personal Musings

I was cruising about on Shoutcast last night looking for background music for reading my Phryne Fisher murder mystery because KCEA was broadcasting a high school football game (they are a high school station; they’re allowed). I was trying to find an online station for which “oldies” or “easy listening” meant something other than early Beatles or “soft rock” or, to put it differently, played the music that WTAR-AM played before I discovered the Jefferson Airplane and before AM radio became a cesspool of hate-full talk.

No luck.


(I still have a crush on Edie Gorme.)

30 August 2015 · Comments Off on It’s Natural Selection · Categories: Personal Musings

There is no truth to the rumor that one must pass an “a$$hole test” to purchase a BMW.

The Inverse Relationship, though, is true: The smaller the BMW, the bigger the–oh, never mind.

21 August 2015 · Comments Off on NASCAR Dreaming · Categories: Personal Musings

I got my driver’s license a long time ago.

Shortly thereafter, I was driving the family car in a snow storm on I-85 near Charlotte, North Carolina. As I recall, I was doing about 50, reasonable in a snow storm, when a pick-up truck careened by me on the left, then immediately shot to the exit ramp on the right, almost taking the hood ornament, except that 1961 Fords did not have hood ornaments.

That’s when I said, “All North Carolina drivers must think they are Richard Petty.”

Well, it’s just going to get worse.

21 August 2015 · Comments Off on “In the Navy, You Can Sail the Seven Seas” · Categories: Personal Musings, Running Naked through the Internet

And do other stuff.

I think it’s damned shame that Ashley Madison got cracked, because cracking is bad. It is bad in and of itself.

I also know temptation, but I can attest that I never signed up for temptation–I waited for it to come to me.

I am struggling with a conflict between principle and schadenfreude, and I fear that, at least on an emotional level, schadenfreude is winning.

17 August 2015 · Comments Off on Good Eats · Categories: Personal Musings

I was in Philadelphia the last few days visiting family.

I now have five grandchildren, all of them boys.

I do love Philadelphia. Despite my 300-plus-years of Virginia roots, Philly is as much home for me as any other place. It is one of the world’s great cities, with one of the world’s great inferiority complexes, as it is half-way between New York City and Washington, D. C., cities that bring hubris to life.

It was good to be in Philly for a few days.

I came back with a cooler full of Philadelphia scrapple, because all you can find in these parts is Rapa brand, which, as far as I can figure out, is a combination of lots of bread-like substances with a few pork-like bits, on which I refuse to waste my money. Breakfast can be many things, but a waste of time should not one of them.

I brought back eight pounds of the real thing–I trust that it’s enough to last me until my next trip up north . . . .

14 August 2015 · Comments Off on “Or Your Money Back” · Categories: Personal Musings

I’m not a big fan of Amazon, as they are trying to hijack all of the retail (cue the chorus: all of the retail) and their warehouses are hell-holes for workers, but I do sometimes order books from them because books are what they do best.

Nevertheless, I was pleasantly surprised at this: I recently ordered some additional Phryne Fisher mysteries (you should too–I’ve read six and am heading for nine) from Amazon; because I was hitting the road for a few days, I paid for overnight delivery. Two of them arrived as scheduled, but one was shipped late. Amazon refunded the entire shipping fee I paid, an amount equal to the cost of one of the books, because of that. I didn’t care and wasn’t going to complain, as I had two books to take with me and stuff happens you know; they did it on their own hook.

I’m still not a big fan of Amazon, but credit where credit is due and all that, eh what?